2023 Kia Seltos launch review

2 weeks ago 35

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Justin Narayan

Kia's first-ever tiny SUV has received its first-ever facelift. What's new?





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What we love
  • New eight-speed car is great
  • Comprehensive improvements to transmission, connectivity and interior sound levels
  • Great thrust and handling

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What we don’t
  • Now costs astir $50K successful flagship form
  • Some interior plastics look inexpensive still
  • Turbo exemplary is inactive thirstier than the offical claim

The Kia Seltos has go a favourite of Australian motorists.

Since launching present precocious successful 2019, the South Korean tiny SUV has earned itself 10 per cent marketplace stock successful our mainstream tiny SUV segment. That's not a atrocious feat for an all-new merchandise and all-new nameplate.

However present astatine the extremity of 2022, the marque has fixed its first-ever tiny SUV a facelift. Aside from caller styling and a caller interior, the 1.6-litre turbo motor has been fixed an update, and is besides present paired to a caller eight-speed torque-converter automatic.



Prices are up, but truthful is modular instrumentality to equilibrium retired the increases. Has Kia made it's large tiny SUV amended for 2023?

How overmuch does the Kia Seltos outgo successful Australia?

As antecedently reported by Drive, prices are up by astir $2200 connected mean crossed the range.

The marque continues to connection 2 engines successful the 2023 Kia Seltos range: a carryover 110kW/180Nm 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder petrol motor with CVT car and front-wheel thrust layout, and an updated mentation of 1.6-litre turbo four-cylinder with 146kW/265Nm (+16kW for 2023), all-wheel thrust and a caller accepted eight-speed auto.



The 2023 Kia Seltos S starts from $31,690 drive-away, up $2400 for 2023. Next up are the Sport, Sport+ and GT-Line models, costing $35,390, $38,490 and $44,590 each connected the road.

That means the aged 2022 Kia Seltos GT-Line constricted variation (with 2.0-litre/front-wheel thrust layout) has present go a main stayer owed to lawsuit demand. The different turbocharged powertrain tin lone beryllium had with 2023 Kia Seltos Sport and 2023 Kia Seltos GT-Line models.

The enactment costs $3500 connected Seltos Sport+ models and $3100 connected Seltos GT-Line models, showing Kia is trying its champion to marque prices arsenic crisp arsenic imaginable wherever it can. It makes the turbocharged and all-wheel thrust brace worthy $41,990 and $47,490 respectively.



There are nary much information packs offered connected the range, and the lone further outgo you'll find is for premium overgarment ($520).

Key details 2023 Kia Seltos GT-Line AWD
Price $44,900 positive on-road costs
Colour of trial car Pluton Blue
Options Premium overgarment – $520
Price arsenic tested $45,420 positive on-road costs
Drive-away price $48,210
Rivals Mazda CX-30 | Toyota Corolla Cross | Nissan Qashqai

How overmuch abstraction does the Kia Seltos person inside?

The Kia Seltos remains the spacious and generous tiny SUV it ever was – particularly arsenic its dimensions person not changed.

The plan of its dashboard and the materials its made from are caller however, and assistance amended the cabin's looks. All 2023 Kia Seltos models present diagnostic a integer instrumentality clump of immoderate benignant alternatively of regular analogue dials. Entry-level Seltos S models person a tiny and low-rent mentation with 4.2-inch LCD display, whereas Sport and supra the afloat 10-inch LCD show with amended graphics and configuration.

Both systems assistance the entreaty of the cabin. We spent clip successful Seltos Sport and GT-Line models, and recovered some comfy implicit a fewer hours down the wheel. The beforehand enactment seats are supportive connected some models; nevertheless the other adjustment, heating, cooling, positive two-position representation connected GT-Line models is conscionable what you'd expect for the price.

Storage is bully successful the archetypal 2 too, with decent-sized cupful holders and an open-air retention pit giving you plentifulness of options for you to dump your crap. The doorway pockets astatine the beforehand volition besides acceptable a decent-sized h2o vessel and your wallet.

Over successful the backmost and sitting down my ain seating position, I recovered plentifulness of space. My knees were good wide of the spot backmost successful front, and feet capable to stretch-out nether the beforehand spot basal too. The 5th (middle) spot is astir apt reserved for erstwhile you person kids on-board, and not 2 adults I reckon, and each Kia Seltos models diagnostic rear aerial vents and a brace of USB-C accelerated charging ports.

Boot abstraction varies depending connected the model, with entry-level Kia Seltos S models having 468L, whereas each others 433L. This is due to the fact that the private-buyer skewed trims of Sport, Sport+ and GT-Line diagnostic a full-size spare wheel.

It's a bully compromise to make, spot me. Even with the full-size spare, the footwear is generous for the people and inactive 1 of its best-selling points. It's large for a young household and volition just-about acceptable a stroller and associated bags for bub.

And, if you spell for the top-spec Seltos GT-Line, you'll besides get an electrical tailgate dissimilar before, too.



2023 Kia Seltos GT-Line
Seats Five
Boot volume 468L (with Space Saver Spare) / 433L (with Full Size Spare) seats up
1,428L (with Space Saver Spare) / 1,393L (with Full Size Spare) seats folded
Length 4,385mm
Width 1,800mm
Height 1,635mm
Wheelbase 2,630mm

Does the Kia Seltos person Apple CarPlay?

Entry-level 2023 Kia Seltos S models diagnostic an eight-inch touchscreen strategy with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Seltos Sport, Sport+ and GT-Line models spell 1 amended with a 10.25-inch strategy with wired and wireless connectivity for some Apple CarPlay an Android Auto. It besides features integer radio, autochthonal navigation and a slick caller bundle interface.

What's champion astir the strategy is the information it's permanently connected to the net for the archetypal time. It means you tin bash each sorts of smarts things with the car via your telephone from anywhere, including turning connected the engine, aerial conditioning oregon flash its lights. More seriously, if geofence an country successful the Kia app that you privation your car not permission – accidental erstwhile connected indebtedness to 1 of your kids – the app volition notify you erstwhile it does.

Great for chopper parents, safety, oregon immoderate you hap to deliberation astir this technology. If the car gets successful an mishap it'll dial SOS too, proving the strategy does person immoderate morganatic merit and safety.

The Bose premium stereo isn't atrocious either, but it does conflict somewhat with clarity.

Is the Kia Seltos a harmless car?

The 2023 Kia Seltos uses the aforesaid 2019 five-star information standing it did erstwhile it primitively launched successful Australia.



It scored good for big occupant extortion and kid occupant extortion (85 and 83 per cent respectively), but fell down successful presumption of susceptible pedestrian extortion (61 per cent).

What information exertion does the Kia Seltos have?

Every 2023 Kia Seltos exemplary comes modular with autonomous exigency braking with cyclist and pedestrian detection, lane keeping assist, unsighted spot monitoring with steering assist, rear-cross postulation alert, front-and-rear parking sensors arsenic good arsenic speed-sign recognition.

The lone other information cogwheel that Kia Seltos Sport, Sport+ and GT-Line models get implicit the entry-level Seltos S are a much precocious automatic braking strategy that detects junctions and intersections arsenic good arsenic an auto-dimming interior mirror.

It's bully to spot the cost-extra information battalion of the erstwhile scope deleted, and besides that information tech it's pretty-much level crossed the scope present for 2023.

How overmuch does the Kia Seltos outgo to maintain?

Maintaining a 2023 Kia Seltos with the 2.0-litre motor and front-wheel thrust layout costs $288, $494 and $352, oregon $1134 for the archetypal 3 years/45,000km of driving.

Years 4 and 5 outgo $614 and $324, making five-years/$75,000km worthy of attraction worthy $2072. If you privation the turbo model, you're paying much again successful presumption of higher prices and a little 10,000km interval. The archetypal 3 years outgo $308, $500 and $373, oregon $1181 for three-years/30,000km worthy of driving.



Years 4 and 5 outgo $651 and $346 respectively, meaning five-years/50,000km costs $2178. It's mediate of the range, with attraction pricing in-line with the 2023 Mazda CX-30, but much costly than a 2023 Toyota Corolla Cross.

Insurance costs for a 35-year aged antheral with a cleanable driving grounds surviving successful Sydney's North Shore came successful astatine $1116 per year, oregon $141.74 a month.

At a glance 2023 Kia Seltos GT-Line
Warranty Seven years, unlimited km
Service intervals 12 months oregon 10,000km
Servicing costs $1181 (3 years)
$2178 (5 years)

Is the Kia Seltos substance efficient?

The marque claims 2023 Kia Seltos models fitted with 1.6-litre turbocharged motor and all-wheel thrust volition usage 7.4L/100km connected the combined cycle, though we saw figures successful the debased 8s aft a bully coagulated thrust up past the Blue Mountains portion of New South Wales.

To compare, we saw 6.9L/100km successful the 2.0-litre exemplary - which is identical to the claim. Both were driven successful the aforesaid manner, truthful bash not discredit the substance redeeming the lower-power motor tin person erstwhile doing your sums.

Fuel Useage Fuel Stats
Fuel cons. (claimed) 7.4L/100km
Fuel cons. (on test) 7.6L/100km
Fuel type Regular Unleaded
Fuel vessel size 50L

What is the Kia Seltos similar to drive?

As with nearly-all its cars, the archetypal Kia Seltos benefitted from a truly good, localised thrust and handling tune. A setup that Australian engineers spent weeks and weeks perfecting with a improvement car long-before it came retired successful 2019.

Thankfully it carries implicit unchanged, meaning the caller exemplary continues to consciousness large successful our unsocial and Australian conditions. The thrust prime is good, but the suspension is steadfast and controlled capable to consciousness confident.



It doesn’t caput moseying astir municipality to beryllium driven astatine 100km/h done great, winding roads (with due velocity limits). Potholes don’t shingle it about, and the sound from grittier stretches of roadworthy aboveground are more oppressed than before, too.

Its handling deserves a telephone out, arsenic it makes the Kia Seltos a large and harmless car to enactment successful a household wherever kids often nick the keys. Sure, it has each the bells and whistles successful presumption of Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) similar others successful the segment, but the Seltos besides goes 1 further by having beardown and inherent handling capabilities.

You can’t spell past having bully basics. The brake pedal bites nicely, and the steering reacts rapidly off-centre, helping the car consciousness responsive erstwhile you provender it inputs. Which, successful the Kia Seltos GT-Line, are handled truthful overmuch amended than before. The outgoing dual-clutch transmission has plentifulness of low-speed foibles, whereas the caller eight-speed torque converter has none.

Kia has yet seen the airy and fitted a buttery-smooth and lurch-free transmission to prevention the day. The turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol motor has 16kW much excessively (146kW/265Nm) and feels faster connected the rotation and from a lasting start. In-gear kickdowns are present swifter with the caller automatic, and substance system has improved for 2023 too.

However, bash deliberation hard astir whether you opt for the turbo motor. Either driveline is great, and the basal 2.0-litre front-wheel thrust car volition beryllium conscionable arsenic harmless successful the existent satellite arsenic the all-wheel thrust model. It's not underpowered by immoderate means, and Kia's CVT is not arsenic dull, dreary and lifeless arsenic the CVTs recovered successful its Japanese competitors.

Be definite to thrust some earlier deciding if you need the power. If you person an unsealed driveway astatine location oregon possibly a larger, much agrarian property, past the all-wheel thrust whitethorn beryllium worthy the extra. It has immoderate terrain absorption controls making it OK for basal level soft-roading connected slippery surfaces.



Key details 2023 Kia Seltos GT-Line
Engine 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol
Power 146kW @ 6,000rpm petrol
Torque 265Nm @ 1,600~4,500rpm
Drive type All instrumentality drive
Transmission 8-speed automatic, AWD
Power to value ratio XXXkW/t
Weight 1,495kg
Spare tyre type Full-size alloy
Tow rating 1,250kg braked
600kg unbraked
Turning circle 10.6m

Should I bargain a Kia Seltos?

Sure, the terms is up, but Kia has added plentifulness much worth for the other asking.

Aside from the connected services, integer displays and different fancy tech, the compartment is quieter and amended built than earlier too. Then there's the caller torque-converter eight-speed auto, which simply makes the turbo exemplary overmuch amended than before.

Reverse parallel parking up a flimsy incline doesn't necessitate Jedi-like absorption with the throttle pedal anymore, and the wide thrust is smoother arsenic a result.

Best of each is that its large thrust and handling bundle hasn't been touched – nor its dimensions either – meaning its a harmless and spacious tiny SUV that's ripe for a cleanable household oregon bare nesters alike.

It's good worthy your information if you're buying for a tiny SUV. 

Ratings Breakdown

Kia Seltos

7.6/ 10

Infotainment & Connectivity

Interior Comfort & Packaging

Justin Narayan

After much than a decennary moving successful the merchandise readying and selling departments of brands similar Kia, Subaru and Peugeot, Justin Narayan returned to being a motoring writer – the precise archetypal occupation helium held successful the industry.

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